livestock & the planet
The Trouble with Intensive Farming
As well as being bad for wildlife, the rising demand for cheaply produced grain-fed meat and dairy is bad for the planet. 30% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions are from agriculture, and about half of that is thought to result from rearing livestock.
Part of the problem is that as cattle, sheep and other ruminants digest food, they emit methane, a powerful greenhouse gas. Intensive farming methods add to the carbon footprint – at best animals are reared outdoors on monocultures of ryegrass, which depend on artificial fertilisers that give off greenhouse gases, and reduce the soil’s ability to store carbon. At worst animals are reared indoors in factory farms, using feeds made from wheat, barley, corn, oil palm kernel and soya. The intensive production and the importation of these feeds adds further greenhouse gas emissions, not least because tropical forests are cleared to grow some of them.
The Solution – Eat Better
Reducing our consumption of meat and dairy is the simplest way to make agriculture less damaging – that’s why many people are choosing to become vegan. Farm Wilder offers an alternative – meat that doesn’t cost the Earth. We advocate eating less meat, but when you do buying higher quality pasture-fed meat that actively supports wildlife and minimises greenhouse gas emissions, as well as reducing other problems like soil erosion, pollution and flooding. Many of Britain’s most endangered species of plants and animals are grassland species, and for them to survive we need to keep grazing wildflower meadows, so some meat and dairy production is essential to maintaining biodiversity. By eating our meat you’re supporting a healthier and more beautiful countryside.